Friday, September 21, 2007
Bad News Today
Jerry and Thomas this summer while doing the Mentos/Coke thing
About two weeks ago my doggie quit eating. He just stared and glared at his food. I bought a different brand of food. He ate a little. Then he was fine for a day or two. He quit eating again. This time I bought canned gravy food. He ate.
This week he started vomiting and didn't want to eat unless it was gravy food. So I made an appointment to get him checked out.
Well, we spent the entire morning at the vet's office. Apparently Jerry has an object in his stomach. Looked like a tennis ball. That was strange because Jerry is not a ball dog at all. He plays with a great big ball, but not with small balls. And this object in his stomach isn't small, it's just a tad bit smaller than a tennis ball.
However, that's not his problem.
His liver test was through the roof, off the charts, ten times what it should be. The x-rays reveal that his liver is enlarged.
So, what to do. Vet gave us options: Exploratory surgery, medications and a special diet or nothing. If we opt for nothing, he'll be gone within a few weeks.
Surgery will be at least $500. The good thing is that whatever is in Jerry's tummy will be removed, they'll be able to see his liver and tell if it's tumors or else do a biopsy. We don't know what the liver issue is, so it may be incurable, which means the $500 tummy surgery would be a waste.
After talking this over with me quite a bit, I asked the vet what he would do if it were his dog. He said he'd try the dog on the meds and special diet to see if the liver test goes down. If it does, there's hope for the liver. Which means we could proceed with the surgery. If Jerry's health deteriorates before we get him retested, we'll know the answer.
Oh, he also mentioned that during surgery if he found the liver to be full of tumors, that he'd put him to sleep on the table.
I am distraught, to say the least. Thomas spent the afternoon bawling. We got home and all snuggled up on my bed. I told Jerry to fight because we loved him. I told Thomas we would not make him suffer, to hope for the best and prepare for the worst.
Watching my son cry was hard. The painful lessons of life.
We bought the meds and special food. Our bill today was $250. We made our decision. If Jerry's liver enzymes go down, which means there's hope, we'll opt for surgery. If not, we'll make him as comfortable as possible, continue to love him, and when it's time, we'll give him a death with dignity.
Give him a death. That just sounds so cold. I do not want him to suffer, though. He deserves more.
My dad adopted Jerry about five years ago. Jerry was too big for him and we adopted him. He is such a good dog, even-tempered, loves kids, gentle. I can't imagine our lives without him. I can't imagine him in pain, either. I called my dad and talked this over with him. I asked him what he would do, how he felt, etc. I finally asked him if we decided to put him down, would he mind. No, he would understand completely. He supports us in whatever decision we make.
So right now Jerry is at my feet, as he always is. He's my constant companion. He's fine, not in pain. The special food has stayed with him. He took his medication fine. He's just Jerry, just a little less energetic than normal.
I hope (and yes, pray) that he bounces back.